The traditional advertising models are collapsing. Where once there were mass media, with the audience a passive receptacle, we are moving toward what branding expert Rob Frankel calls “the masses controlling the media.” An audience empowered by hundreds of cable channels and TiVo pays less and less mind to TV ads. And the marketers, well, some might suggest they are desperate.
“You can smell the fear,” Garfield says.
Which means that smart marketers will figure out how to get the people to do much of their work for them. The big marketing story of this year’s Super Bowl was “consumer-generated advertising,” in which ordinary folks competed to help create TV spots for Doritos and Chevrolet.
And it’s not only about getting your audience involved. It can be done the other way, by creating your own engaging content that your audience wants to see.
For example, look at this site called Willitblend.com.
The kitchen appliance company Blendtec has a microsite called Willitblend.com, which functions as a laboratory of unlikely things getting pureed in Blendtec blenders, including pickled pigs’ feet and light bulbs. Users can send a note to the Will It Blend? site to suggest a new item to be blended — a shag rug, perhaps.
Man, I want one of those super blenders, don’t you?
What are you creating that is engaging? Are you concentrating your marketing efforts on building content that will grab hold of your audience?